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I have had the day from hell(65 Posts)
Social worker phones me today after visiting ds in school to 'observe' ds, which amounted to ds being taken to a room and questioned again by her.
She tells me she is very concerned by what ds has told her, he wants to kill himself, wishes he was died, he harms himself by scratching his skin off, digging himself with scissors, punching himself in the the face because of his worries and feelings etc. That he 'didnt really mention any school worries' but he said that his 19 and 16 year old brother beat him up and bully him and this was the focus of his conversation. She is now raising it to a CP issue.
She wanted me to take ds to GP today, like now and ask for a urgent mental health assessment and CAMHS referal. I told her my GP had made a CAMHS referal months ago and i had been chasing it up all week, as i too was very concerned for ds. It had been accepted and i was just waiting for appointment. I phoned CAMHS again and they said take ds to A&E and ask for psychiatrist assessment (CAMHS on call). SW told me this is what i should do, she phoned school so i could take him out of school and to the hospital.
We attended A&E and were seen by clinical psychiatrists from CAMHS
Interestingly, ds's focus or main topic of converation was all school related worries and that school was making him very unhappy and sad. He was asked by CAMHS what had he spoken to you about and he made no mention of his brothers, just all school related worries, that children bully him and hit him, they get him into trouble for things he hasnt done and tell lies about him, he finds the work too hard, hates school etc, etc.
No mention of his brothers beating him up or bullying him, even when i prompted him to tell CAMHS about his 'worries about his brothers'. He said they were 'nice' but could be annoying.
Today from what i observed all of ds's worries were about school and at the end of the assessment i asked CAMHS should i send ds to school tomorrow. They asked ds how he felt about going to school tomorrow and he replied he felt unhappy and sad about school and didnt want to go. CAMHS concluded not to send him for now, if it will distress him and potentially result in more self harm.
I explained when my GP had previously signed ds off from school due to his self harming, that the LA had written to my GP telling him that ds was fit enough to attend. CAMHS said to give school their number and they will liaise with school about ds not attending and what support he will need.
Ds also spoke about how he self harms in school ie scratches his legs so much his legs bleed and the blood goes onto his school trousers.
Sorry that is long, i dont know what to do or think anymore.
Sorry nothing useful but just wanted to send honks, wine, hugs, and chocs. At least you've had it confirmed by the Drs now and he doesn't have to go back to school.
Honk honk honk
God claw, what a day. No wonder you dont know what to do
It sounds like the people from CAMHS who saw him in A and E were quite helpful but even so.
I am honking for you and your Ds.
Its all so conflicting, i assume a SW isnt qualified to question an obvious already very confused ASD child. So in light of what ds has told CAMHS, can she raise it to a CP issue ie blame home?
Do CAMHS trump SW, does SW and CP issue trump CAMHS?
Claw, actually, despite the stuff about his brothers, that sounds like you might actually be getting somewhere. At least CAMHS have heard from your DS that school is a big issue for him. It may be at school he feels too scared to blame school for his anxiety and in a neutral place like CAMHS he is telling the truth. He may have issues with his brothers as well, of course, that he won't mention in front of you?
He says he doesnt talk to people who go into school about his school worries as he is 'worried he will get into trouble for saying bad things about school'
He has issues with his brother, he is always saying he has hurt him ie a touch on the arm is a punch, a touch on the shoulder is a strangle, he likes him as long as he is doing exactly what he says, when he says. He gets stressed at him for the slightest little thing, if he is playing a game with him, he has to do exactly as he says, otherwise he will fly into a rage at him. Then if he refuses to play because he is raging at him, he rages even more. He writes horrible things about him. This is the 'nice' brother who ds spoke about.
The brother who is 19, who SW referred to, the one who is constantly bullying him and hitting him, hasnt lived here for over a year now. So ds rarely sees him. Ds has a note he wrote and saved on his ipod from a couple of weeks ago, about how this brother is the best brother in the world etc, etc.
Ds blows hot and cold with his brothers, depending on his mood and whether they do as he wants. But i can honestly say they have never hit him or bullied him, they are grown men!
Tiredness, SW told me last week it is was def not a CP issue, after she questioned ds at home. She knew all about the self harming, ds has been doing it for years, she saw all the cuts over ds last week. I told her he talks about wishing he was dead etc. Ive been telling people this for years.
He was discharged from CAMHS about 6 months ago after one and half years of therapy and they concluded lots of school related issues and anxiety, nothing about home issues.
So it seems it has been raised to a CP issue because he said his brothers beat him up and bully him. This is really f* up
Everything is just so conflicting, i feel like im going mad. The reason school reported me to CP was despite me reporting to them numerous times that ds was self harming and very seriously, they denied its existence, even after reading CAMHS reports, attending CAMHS meeting, they still denied that ds self harmed, i took pictures and showed them, they continued to deny it.
I applied for a statement and provided the LA with pictures too. They reported me to CP for taking 'inappropriate pictures' of ds's injuries, the injuries they said didnt exist!
SW visits us at home, states it def not a CP issue. Following week SW visits him in school, its now a CP issue and ds needs urgent mental health assessment, that cannot possible wait another minute and he needs to be taken out of school to get there immediately.
She knew all about the self harming history, she knew all about him wishing he was dead the previous week. School and LA have known about it for years. Why the sudden rush?
My interpretation of todays events.
1. Cahms trumps SW here - she did the right thing in recognising that this is beyond her own sphere of expertise to get to the bottom of and insisting you were referred to the medics. She acted like the professional she is and credit is due to her for doing that! You did yourself a favour by taking her advice and being seen to act on it (yup SW's have ego's too) - that's brownie points for you when she comes to write her report.
2.Medics had to take her referral more seriously than your previous pleas and actually get off their own arses and start to be seen to be doing their job.
3. GP has now been vindicated for helping you previously as Cahms confirmed that SCHOOL IS A MAJOR FOOKIN' ISSUE in relation to your child's MH. GP can now openly support you once more, without fear of reprisals.
4. DS now gets to stay home and recuperate till your tribunal which must be a relief as well as being more evidence for Tribunal that school IS failing to meet his needs.
5. Next major event is when Cahms feeds back to social worker. Given that they have previously documented what help your child needs and been ignored only to have said child dumped on their doorstep today in crisis, I think that convo will go well from your POV
My own experience of Cahms bods is that they tend to have HUGE egos and once they've decided on summat will not change their opinion (even when blatently wrong). In your case this is a good thing as they only have to go back thru your son's notes and repeat what they said in the past. They won't like having their professional opinions ignored by medically unqualified teachers.
6. IF DS has a real genuine issue with his brothers rather than them just being HIS scapegoat/frustration release mechanism then it'll be resolved in due course via family therapy or some such nonsense - NOT via CP procedures.
Most of us take s&*t out on our nearest and dearest under extreme stress and we know they'll still love us unconditionally iykwim. Cahms are trained to tell the difference between frustrated rants and abuse exposes in a way the SW isn't - and she knows it!
Providing you house doesn't look like it needs a visit from Kim and Aggie, and you aren't running a brothel, the social worker will start to fade away after this, though she may keep the file open a little longer just to back cover.
7. School WILL be asked by social worker for evidence that they implemented Cahms previous instructions.
8. Expect LEA to go a bit quiet during this period, while they mull all the above over. Conversations WILL be had with the school from the various professionals, & they'll go to the grave before you are made privy to the contents.
On the Tribunal/legal front - things are finally looking up for you it seems.
However I am really worried about your DS (and you tbh). It's a disgrace things have been allowed to go so far. DS found his veggie patch and his dog his greatest sources of comfort when he was an emotional wreck due to school. Digging the tattie patch seemed to relax him a bit, when nothing else could. I dunno if it's effective for older kids but do you think a project like that might help your boy? realseeds.co.uk has some great winter veggie selections suitable for planting now.
I'm so sorry you are going thru all this. I'm also sorry for such an essay
Don't know - maybe they saw the brother thing as a way of getting them off the hook - in that their 'we don't see any self harm or anxiety' argument was falling apart after it stopped over the holidays and started again when back at school. Maybe the school / SW saw that as a way of getting them off the hook - in that SW has known about self harm / your concerns re school for a long time and done nothing. So easier to blame something at home than admit they have ignored his needs.
DS is very intolerant of his brothers in his space. Thats typical ASD. He also finds even minor things eg them singing, playing on the wii unacceptable!
Why was SW in school anyway?
Am hoping fact CAMHS now back on the scene things will get better. Last thing anyone will want is to have to put in expensive CP intervention programme into the home if there is actually no problem there.
You may have to accept your DS account is unreliable and coloured by who he is talking to / what he thinks they want to hear. I don't think that matters because the self harm during school terms - and lack of self harm when you took him out of school - speaks for itself. Even if they say well if he is unreliable about his brothers he is also unreliable about his school concerns, that does not explain the self harm. The best thing you ever did was take him out and get GP evidence it cleared up when away from school.
How are school going to explain the insect bite malarky now?
When was the EP going into school?
So sorry you are having all this Claw.
You mentioned in your first post that he had said to the SW today that he wanted to kill himself.
That could be the trigger for the urgent CAMHS referral. A SW cannot assess whether this is a serious threat or not and probably has a protocol to refer immediately to make sure
pass the buck he is ok.
Perhaps he didn't say those words last week.
I would think if that was the reason for the referral, the SW would be less interested in why he felt that than just making sure something got done.
Not saying this is what happened but just throwing out a suggestion.
Oh claw I can only imagine how you're feeling at the moment. It does sound like you've got somewhere today. I find it hard to believe that men would bully their young, vulnerable brother. It's probably them joking with hm and he's just not getting it.
My DD is not Dx'd but we just don't joke or try and joke/wind her up anymore. She would tell anyone that we bullied or 'battered' her, when in reality it's just a tap - I've seen it with my own eyes.
It doesn't make it any easier for you though.
Yes, DS says 'you shouted at me' when you have simply asked him to do something he doesn't like.
IE is right - the SW will have a professional protocol she legally has to adhere to in the case of a self-harming child that threatens suicide. She's smart enough to ensure her own back is covered no matter what political shenanigans go on at the LA.
cahms will be able to explain things like touch sensitivity, literal understanding of language etc to the school/LA.
Question for your solicitor - is this the point at which you are able to look for another part 4 placement as the relationship between your child and the school can now be said to have officially broken down? Can he now be taken off the roll of this poisonous school officially until a kinder placement is found (i have my suspicions about leading questions and the school SW interview tbh).
Bochead, thank you so much, not an essay at all, ok well maybe a bit! , but it has really, really helped me, my head is swimming.
Yes ds's dog and his cats are his best friends, ds doesnt like getting dirty and has a food phobia and wont touch food, so a tatty patch or veggie patch wouldnt be his cup of tea. He likes lining up lego in times of stress.
Agnes ds is the same, his brother is not allowed to sing in the car! He is fine with his brother, as long as its on his terms and he does as he says!
SW asked my permission to go into school to 'observe' ds, in order to 'complete her assessment and report'. She had already questioned him at length at home, without me being in the room the previous week.
The 'gnat' bites was what previous SW had concluded when she saw pictures of ds's self harm. School and LA are still denying that ds self harms, even as recent as today in their response to oppose my appeal. We had a previous visit from another SW about 2 weeks before another one phoned me and said she was now dealing with ds's case as other SW didnt work there anymore.
EP in December
nothing helpful to say, just hope that this might just be a turning point if they listen to what he says about school.
IE and Sweet, that is exactly it ds is very intolerant of his brothers, he doesnt get jokes or banter, if they say they dont want to do something they hate him, if they play a game 'wrong' they are being unfair and ruining everything.
They are actually nice to him, despite him being so horrid to them, they play on the ps3, play football with him, take him to the shop, buy him sweets, let him into their room to play board games, lego etc, despite being whacked for their efforts, called names, having their belongings stolen and hidden for their 'offences'. My 19 year old moved out about a year ago, he has gone to live his dad, so he can have his own room and not have to share with his other brother and probably to get away from ds!
Bochead, removing him from previous school is exactly what i did at exactly this time 2 years ago when i applied for SA and was in the process of appealling. It didnt turn out too well, new school ie this one told of all the wonderful help ds would get and there was very much a feeling of lets see how he gets on at this school first and i lost. Lots of various other reasons too.
I received the LA's response to my current appeal for SA today. When he started at his school he got 20 hours of 1:1, social skill group, SALT, motor skills group and they were supporting my request for a statement.
He now gets motor skill group twice a week for half and hour and thats it.
WHO is qualified to get to the bottom of your ds' worries? SW or CAHMS?
I would put my money on CAHMS for expertise and training and professional remit.
Do you know what, I really do 'get' where you're coming from.
These so-called experts may of had many years training to do what they do. However, don't just turn up in our dc life and tell us we're in the wrong. It's the same as reading a thousand books on labour and parenting - unless you experience it yourself, it's all fiction. I'm an expert in my child, no one else. And unless they are going through the same as you, they will never understand. And that last sentence is what my doctor said to me the last time I saw her to get support for me.
Oh sorry i forgot he also gets a very carefully re-worded social skill group twice a week, it has now become a 'self esteem group'
It also says that ds receives 'input from the advisory teachers - input is received as requested. However, ds has not required input'
So the school expect the child to ask for things they know he needs?!
I've noticed it says 'has access to' on lots of things. My dd would never ask for anything. She would see that as questioning the schools authority.
So when he started at this school he needed 20 hours of 1:1 to help him deal with his anxieties and to ensure that he had a familar face to trust and talk to etc, etc.
He is now self harming using objects, needing medical intervention twice last week and requires emergency mental health assessment and he has a social skill group twice a week.
and LA are opposing my appeal as school are meeting his needs!
Claw am sure AE is right it will be because he threatened his life
Just sit tight and see how the CAMHS thing plays out
they let you take him home so they must think he is safe there
With any luck they will write something damning about school
I know a similar scenario the child had a breakdown and when the school asked when the child would be coming back to school (school had told parent for years child did not have ASD his behaviour was due to crap parenting) CAMHS told the school the child had AS and was never coming back because the school had damaged him enough already and it was unsafe for child to return. He ended up at an independent school with small classes in the countryside and was a different child
you deserve some luck, lets hope CAMHS do the right thing
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